Friday, March 1, 2013

Charters in Boston are doing great, New York charters are okay but questionable, and the U.S. educational standings worldwide gets revised upward

There's good news about charter schools, and a big question. The question is an important one; why are charter schools in some districts doing well, and most everywhere else, not succeeding? And if charter schools do well, why aren't the lessons learned there finding there way into the public schools that oversee them?

Charters in Boston are doing great, New York charters are okay but questionable, and the U.S. educational standings worldwide gets revised upward:
Overall, charter school students have higher learning gains in reading and math than their counterparts in regular public schools, says a new study by the Center for Research on Education Outcomes—or CREDO—at Stanford University.

The report found that, over a period of six school years, 22 percent of charter schools had greater learning gains in reading than their traditional public school counterparts, while 25 percent of charter schools had significantly lower learning gains in that subject … on average, charter school students in New York City learned the equivalent of a month of additional instruction in reading than their traditional public school counterparts.

The demographics of the charter school student population differ greatly from those of the traditional district schools. Charters educate a higher percentage of African-American students, 62 percent compared with 29 percent, respectively—and tend to enroll fewer special education students (12 percent to publics 17 percent) and English-language learners (5 percent to publics 14 percent)

Massachusetts: Students in charter schools in Massachusetts outperformed their regular public school counterparts in reading and math in the state, and students in charter schools in Boston experienced significantly higher learning gains.

Students in charter schools in Massachusetts gained an additional one and a half more months of learning per year in reading and an additional two and a half more months of learning per year in math.

Students in Boston's charter schools gained 12 months of additional learning per year in reading and 13 months of additional learning in math compared with their regular public school counterparts.
The largest CREDO has seen in any city or state thus far.

The findings on charter school performance throughout Massachusetts were more mixed. Urban charters outperformed regular district schools in math and reading, suburban charters saw smaller gains in math and reading, rural charters saw significant gains in reading but average gains in math, and charter schools located in "towns" (defined as an urban cluster that is 10 to 35 miles away from an urbanized area) had significantly lower growth than regular district schools in reading and similar growth as regular public schools in math.
Here's a few pages from Edweek (subscription) I captured that should be considered seriously:
Click to enlarge

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